Tuesday, September 25, 2007
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[September 25, 2007]  The 2005 audit has been submitted and the 2006 audit is under way. With that, a special finance committee meeting has been called for this evening (Tuesday) for the finalizing of the committee's recommendation of a fiscal 2007-2008 budget. The new fiscal year begins on Dec. 1.

Emergency communications keeping on the cutting edge

Progress continues in the development of the new 911 communications room. The upgrades will feature fully integrated new computers and software systems addressing the needs of multiple departments. The system will speed communications between telecommunicators and callers, law enforcement, and all first responders in the field, as well as providing immediate access and exchange of information with pertinent offices.

Airport business

A request by Chuck Holzwarth for additional space to expand his business at the airport is being negotiated. Holzwarth runs an aerial farm chemical and seed application business. He had as many as 13 planes in the air over Logan County this last summer, committee chairman Bill Sahs said. The committee is examining several options that will allow Holzwarth the added space he has requested.

County highways

The Logan County Highway Department has received maps of the 2006 traffic count from the Illinois Department of Transportation. The maps have numbers on them that represent the average number of vehicles traveling on a particular road each day.

Federal highway bridge program funds will be used for biennial bridge inspections next year.

The county will be receiving funds for the replacement of box culverts on Fifth Street Road between 225 and 500 avenues. This work will complement the work that is to be done later when the road between Interstate 55 and Middletown is fully renovated. Funds are coming from a federal grant in the amount of $324,500. The estimated total cost is $360,000. This is a 90/10 agreement. The county and possibly the township will supply the remaining 10 percent.

An increase in coal sales has county officials scrambling to find funding for renovation to County Highway 10. The roadway that serves the coal mine needs thicker pavement to endure heavy trucks and increased traffic. The increase in coal sales is not anticipated until late 2008 or early 2009.

Zoning matters

Windmill ordinance -- A newly written ordinance that regulates variations of windmills is in the process of approval. It is expected to be presented to the Logan County Board for review on Oct. 13.

New Logan County zoning officer Will D'Andrea has defined a couple of big projects for his office. In processing rezoning applications he has found that the county zoning map has not been kept updated since about 2000 or 2001. D'Andrea observed that this is a process that needs to be re-implemented, particularly as it ties into keeping accurate records for GIS.

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A problem recently was discovered on a property that was rezoned last year from B-1 to B-3 for a business expansion. However, B-3 requires setbacks, and according to the property owner, with those setbacks, there isn't room for the expansion. The property will now be rezoned back to B-1.

D'Andrea is also planning to reorganize records in his office for easier identification. Building permits are currently organized by name. He would change nearly 6,000 records over to "by address." This will be a time-consuming project that he will do over a period of time.

Buildings and grounds

The roof of the bandstand in Latham Park has been repaired by R.L. High.

Pictured are Eagle Scout Corey Bell, holding a certificate of appreciation for his work in renovating the historic bandstand; Logan County Board Chairman Dick Logan, with a pictorial gift; and John Stewart, board vice chairman and grounds chairman.

(Historic Latham Park band shell renovations completed)

Animal control

The animal control committee is gathering information from other counties to update the local ordinance.

Additionally, Dr. Sanborn reports that there are 851 delinquent rabies registrations. This equates to $49,300 in lost revenue for the county. A letter is being generated


Geoff Ladd, executive director of the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County, welcomes Stacie Wachtel to the tourism board of directors.

The board approved the appointment of Stacie Wachtel to the board of directors of the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County.

[Jan Youngquist]

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